Houston, Texas is a beautiful city with a rich culture and history, as well as offering many fun activities for families. However, summers in Houston are known for being incredibly hot, with temperatures reaching over 100 degrees Fahrenheit. For many people, these temperatures pose serious health risks, especially for those with other conditions and for children. In the summer months, it is safest to stay indoors as much as possible. But if you have kids, how do you entertain them while staying cool? Take a look at our top picks for summer family fun in Houston.
1. HOUSTON MUSEUM OF NATURAL SCIENCE
Did you know that there are over 100 museums in Houston? Many of the most popular ones are located in the Museum District of the city, which includes the Museum of Natural Science. Many of the exhibitions in the museum will delight children such as dinosaur fossils, gems and minerals, and ancient Egyptian artifacts. There’s also a planetarium, another favorite (and cool) activity for children interested in the cosmos. In addition, the museum offers free admission to its permanent exhibitions on Thursdays. Check the museum’s website for more information.
2. CHILDREN’S MUSEUM OF HOUSTON
From its name alone, the Children’s Museum of Houston is a great place to go to have fun with kids. Kids can explore interactive exhibits that explore water, physics, the periodic table, 3D printing and so much more. There’s also a ropes course designed for children’s smaller statues. For kids who are looking to be the next James Bond, there’s an interactive spy game where kids crack codes and uncover clues to help save the museum from nefarious forces.
3. GAME SHOW CHALLENGE
If you’re looking for an interactive indoor activity for the whole family, look no further than the Game Show Challenge. If you’ve ever dreamt of participating in a game show, here you can make that dream a reality. The Game Show Challenge is a live, one-hour interactive game show led by a real host. Each group participates in four or more game show rounds. There are nine different game show rounds to choose from, including spinning a wheel to solve word puzzles, competing in hilarious relays, dropping chips from twelve feet in the air, and more. This is the perfect fun indoor activity for families.
4. DOWNTOWN AQUARIUM
Another great way to beat the summer heat is to visit an aquarium. The Downtown Aquarium in Houston showcases animals and fish local to Texas such as alligators, bullfrogs, and turtles. Other animals and fish include lionfish, pufferfish, sharks, eels, lizards, colorful rainforest frogs, and tigers from the jungles of India. You can also touch and feed live stingrays in the stingray reef exhibit. There are also amusement park rides.
5. ESCAPE HUNT HOUSTON
One of the best interactive indoor activities for families and friends alike to beat the heat is an escape room. Escape Hunt Houston offers original games with varying difficulty levels. Some of the games include rescuing the crew of an Apollo mission, escaping Blackbeard’s ship, recovering a stolen artifact, and more!
6. SPACE CENTER HOUSTON
Do you have a kid who loves space and all things space travel? A trip to the Space Center Houston is a must-see for you! The Space City’s Smithsonian affiliate serves as the Official Visitor Center of NASA Johnson Space Center. Among the list of things to see are a SpaceX Falcon9 rocket, suits from Apollo moon missions, and a space shuttle replica mounted on a shuttle carrier aircraft NASA 905. Visitors can walk the flight deck of the space shuttle.
You can even participate in the NASA Tram Tour where visitors get a behind-the-scenes look at the NASA Johnson Space Center to see astronaut training facilities and Mission Control.
7. LONE STAR FLIGHT MUSEUM
If you have a child who loves all things aviation, the Lone Star Flight Museum is a must-see on your trip to Houston. The 60,000 square feet of air-conditioned space in the hangars house numerous historic aircraft from warbirds to dive bombers to fighter jets, and more. There are also 27 interactive exhibits and three replica cockpits (which are ADA accessible). Additionally, kids can explore what it’s like to be a pilot in flight simulators. Children eight and older can use the simulators, and they are free to use on weekends. The museum also offers $5 admission on Thursdays.
8. SPEEDY’S FAST TRACK
This facility offers a number of family-friendly indoor and outdoor activities. Drive a go-kart around an open-air track to try your hand at mini-golf. There’s also an arcade and an expansive 2,525-square-foot laser tag arena.